France authorities arrest Srebrenica massacre suspect

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[JURIST] French authorities announced Tuesday the identity of a Serbian man arrested a day earlier and suspected of participating in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre [JURIST news archive] in Bosnia, where a total of 8,000 Bosnian Muslims were killed. Milorad Momic, who has allegedly been living under a false name in France, is a suspected former member of the Serbian paramilitary group, the Scorpions [JURIST news archive], which took part in the massacre. French police officers arrested Momic on Monday under an international arrest warrant [AFP report], and he may be extradited to Serbia to face trial for crimes against humanity. Prosecutors believe that Momic is part of a Scorpion group that videotaped the murder [JURIST report] of Bosnian Muslims near Srebrenica. The graphic 1995 video [JURIST video; WARNING: this video may be disturbing to some viewers] first surfaced in 2005 during the trial of Slobodan Milosevic [JURIST news archive] by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website]. A French will decide Thursday whether to extradite [Bloomberg report] Momic to Serbia.

Serbia has undertaken an ongoing effort to apprehend those responsible for the atrocities that occurred in the region during the 1992-95 Bosnian civil war [JURIST news archive]. Suspected Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) war criminal Dragan Crnogorac was arrested [JURIST report] in November in connection with the Srebrenica massacre. In August, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website] issued genocide charges [JURIST report] against four former Bosnian Serb soldiers, accusing them of participating in the murder of more than 800 Bosnian Muslims during the massacre. In April, the court convicted [JURIST report] two men of genocide, Radomir Vukovic and Zoran Tomic, for their roles in the massacre and sentenced each to 31 years imprisonment. The BiH war crimes court was set up in 2005 to relieve the caseload of the ICTY and is authorized to try lower-level war crime suspects.

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